Spotify is launching a new playlist service called Discover Weekly that uses your data to serve you songs you might like.
|Scooped by Olivier Lartillot|
Most popular Spotify playlists are made by human curator, “but they live and die by data.”
The playlists are made using an “internal Spotify tool called Truffle Pig. Jim Lucchese, CEO of The Echo Nest (which was also acquired by Spotify) refers to Truffle Pig as “Pro Tools for playlists.” It’s part of a version of the Spotify app that’s only available to employees. It lets them build a playlist from almost anything: an artist’s name, a song, a vague adjective or feeling. You tell Truffle Pig you want, say, a twangy alt-country playlist. That’s enough to get started. Then you refine: “Say you want high acousticness with up-tempo tracks that are aggressive up to a certain value. It’ll generate a bunch of candidates, you can listen to them there, and then drop them in and add them to your playlist.”
The Echo Nest’s job within Spotify is to endlessly categorize and organize tracks. The team applies a huge number of attributes to every single song: Is it happy or sad? Is it guitar-driven? Are the vocals spoken or sung? Is it mellow, aggressive, or dancy? On and on the list goes. Meanwhile, the software is also scanning blogs and social networks—ten million posts a day—to see the words people use to talk about music. With all this data combined, The Echo Nest can start to figure out what a “crunk” song sounds like, or what we mean when we talk about “dirty south” music.”